All Primary Schools to Host JSS in New Proposal
MPs have urged the government to provide infrastructure in all primary schools for junior secondary school (JSS).
The lawmakers noted that the current arrangement, where only a few primary schools have JSS sections, has seen many learners forced to travel long distances to access education.
While debating a motion tabled by Mbeere North MP Geoffrey Ruku, the lawmakers warned that without proper guidelines and policies governing the transition from primary to junior secondary, many learners risk being locked out.
The MPs complained that many learners who were in Grade Six and whose primary schools were not designated to offer JSS were finding it difficult to go to other schools.
“This arrangement forces learners to travel long distances to access institutions where JSS is available, which is not good,” said Mr Ruku.
“Communities have over the years continuously established learning institutions in their localities to address the lack of physical facilities. It is wrong to negate the gains communities have made by locating JSS in a few schools,” he added.
Bureti MP Kibet Komingoi said: “Without clear guidelines and policies on the distance from one school to another, the implementation of this programme will affect our children.”
Through his motion, Mr Ruku wants the government to establish JSS in every primary school, saying the current arrangement has caused confusion.
“The government has not addressed the infrastructural problems of this curriculum. I’m sure every member here has a challenge in their constituency regarding JSS and this is likely to affect the implementation of this curriculum,” said Mr Ruku.
Kamukunji MP Yusuf Hassan lamented that JSS have inadequate facilities and an acute shortage of teachers.
“There is a need to come up with a clear policy including infrastructure to address the challenges of junior secondary schools for smooth implementation, it will be important to come up with a clear policy and funding plan so that the level of education in the country doesn’t deteriorate,” Mr Hassan said.
Kisumu East MP Shakeel Shabbir said JSS should not have been hosted in primary schools.
“There is no way you can have JSS students in a primary school. The students have to be in a secondary school,” Mr Shabbir said.
Appearing before Parliament last week, Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu told MPs that as at April 14, a total of 1,192,427 learners had enrolled in JSS, compared to an enrolment of 1,212,279 learners in Grade Six.
According to the Education Ministry, there are currently 23,820 schools approved to host JSS,18,695 public and 5,125 private.